During a visit as part of bilateral consultations with Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of Belarus Oleg Kravchenko, the deputy chief of the Polish MFA discussed a number of issues related to Polish-Belarusian relations, including the development of political dialogue, the ways to boost economic cooperation, the situation of the Polish minority and Polish language teaching in Belarus.
“We want to develop bilateral dialogue to openly discuss our problems and look for the best solutions together,” said Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Marcin Przydacz, who visited Belarus on 15-17 May.
The undersecretary of state at the Polish MFA also met with UNDP and UNICEF representatives in Belarus to discuss development projects implemented as part of Poland’s development cooperation. He also visited the Barauliany Children's Oncology Centre, which is supported by the Polish MFA under the Polish Aid programme. The effects of cooperation between the Polish Embassy in Minsk and the Republican Centre for Pediatric Oncology, Hematology and Immunology in Barauliany near Minsk in 2013-2015 are still visible today.
As part of the project, the Polish Embassy in Minsk purchased a mobile house for long-term accommodation of ill children and their parents at the Centre. Promoting the idea of building the Barauliany Pension in the Belarusian mass media made other donors join in. A total of 21 such houses have been purchased. The idea of creating a complex of mobile houses at the Centre’s premises was born in response to the difficulties in accommodating children who arrive with their parents for treatment and follow-up visits from across Belarus. The lack of accommodation for young patients and their parents on the Centre’s premises meant they had to rent flats in the surrounding areas. This entailed additional costs of stay as well as risks for ill children (especially those with weakened immunity) associated with the daily travel by public transport from Minsk to the clinic, particularly in autumn and winter. Originally, the Centre was designed to treat 115 children at the same time but their number kept growing.
A children’s playground on the site was also renovated. In 2015, the construction was financed of an extension to provide rehabilitation and therapeutic care for ill children and their parents.
The embassy’s involvement was highly appreciated by the Belarusian Ministry of Health and the Department for Humanitarian Aid of the Office of the President of the Republic of Belarus.